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Weekly Photo Challenge: Close

19 Jun

Close … so close


You woke up early everyday for three months. You practiced. You huffed and puffed.

You watched ESPN and something called The Tennis Channel.

You thought about the championship moment. You fantasized about it. You visualized the big win. You saw yourself pumping your fist in the air, saying YES!

The moment is here.

The last point.

You swing.

You watch the ball … it bounces.


You close your eyes and shake your head.

Close … so close.

This is what happens in sports. In every sport. But at least you have Gatorade.

Close … so close

The Prince People: Awesome Customer Service

18 Mar

Most of the time, they suck. You know it. I know it. They know it.

They put you on hold and make you dials 15 digits before you can speak to an actual human being. Most customer service agents suck. Other than the Big Island Candies Chocolate people (who are awesomely fantabulous) I’ve run into nothing but aggravation from this species … that is until I met Ken from Prince Sports— Tennis Racket Division.

Prince Sports

Image via Wikipedia

  We recently went to something called the Racket Doctor to pick out my son’s first tennis racket.  He’s got golf clubs, a baseball bat, a football and a soccer ball. We figured … might as well make sure he likes what we like, or at least gets exposed to it. So many choices, but we narrowed it down to the Babolat, Rafael Nadal personal favorite, or the Prince.

We were both torn, Customer Service Agent Ken … he was awesome.

Nadal vs Federer en la final de Roland Garros 2007

Image via Wikipedia

But Rafael … C’mon now. He plays with Babolat. It’s Nadal. The King of Clay. The awesome Spaniard. One of the few who’ve completed The Grand Slam. One of our favorite players. But then I reminded him of the letter I wrote for him … the letter!So we stood there debating …  

Dear Prince People,

I have owned various Prince Signature products and enjoyed them immensely throughout the years. Despite their constant usage, they have served me to the best of their ability on the tennis courts. However, recently you “Built Equipment that DID NOT Rule the Court,” but ruined my tennis cache. I had cache, but alas on the fateful day…Poof! Gone.

I play a regular game every Tuesday and Thursday at our neighborhood park, with a motley crew of overweight (mostly divorced) fifty+ year olds. Premier athletes, if you will. I’m the young stud … the ringer. Although regardless of my age there are a couple of guys who run me up and down the court in spite of their luscious physique. But for the most part, I’m victorious.

So the day my cache was gone, I kept telling the overweight regulars that it was my tennis racket. My tennis racket! But they continued the constant ridicule: “It’s not about the equipment, it’s about how you use it.” This attack on my manhood put a hitch in my get-along and rattled my conviction in your product.   

I was up 4-3 in the set when my opponent – Mauricio the wife-beater – hit a lob. I widened my stance and prepared to smash it down his throat, when IT happened. The sun. The God-dang sun turned my smash into a missed-hit overhand.

It was only until after my demise on the court and the purchasing of a six-pack of Coors for the victor that I realized my racket had been fractured. I was devastated! How the hell can a tennis ball, something crushed in half by the Bionic Woman, splinter my Prince Tour Diablo?

I almost had a John-McEnroe moment. But I maintained. I took it to the Racket Doctor. Stat! But they could not restring it or bring it back to life! The frame was cracked. I was in mourning. Still am.

I have enclosed the tennis racket for your inspection. I have always trusted in your product and it has never failed me. Whether it’s been tennis shoes, shirts, caps, or rackets. You have always come through for me with fine quality and craftsmanship. But you left me hanging.

The workmanship flaw caused me to lose the match to Mauricio … Mauricio the wife-beater and that humiliation deserves redemption. This guy was exiled for over a year from the park because of his extra curricular activities. I could not lose to someone with such poor character. I needed redemption, and I pray that you will be able to remedy my situation, as Ken from customer service left me hopeful.

In Disappointment,

 The Guat’s Dude.

About three weeks later he got a new Prince Tour Diablo … Factory fresh.

 We stood there thinking of how much we loved Rafael and his Babolat, but then there was Ken … Which tennis racket do you think we bought?